Weekend Update … The Beginning of Year Two for the Chicago Cubs

One year ago, October 30, 2009, the Ricketts family was introduced as the new owners of the Chicago National League Ball Club. Tom Ricketts preached accountability, the goals of the organization and shot down the notion of a curse that has kept the Cubs from winning the final game of the season. Year One did not go as the family had hoped and is now in the books …

The next week is an important one for the Chicago Cubs. The annual organizational meetings officially begin Tuesday in Mesa. From scouts to the coaches and managers throughout the system to the front office to Jim Hendry and Tom Ricketts, all will be in attendance at the Cubs’ complex at Fitch Park to discuss how the organization will move forward. The vote on the Cubs new Spring Training home is on Tuesday as well … so there should be plenty of news out of Arizona over the next seven days.

While the baseball world debates game three of the Fall Classic, here are a few notes and an off-season calendar on the final weekend of the 2010 Major League Baseball Season …

Bench Coach
The announcement should be made in the coming week about Mike Quade’s coaching staff for 2011. It appears the entire staff will return, with the exceptions of Alan Trammell and Matt Sinatro … Trammell took the D’Backs bench coach job earlier in the week. Trammell departing for Arizona came at no surprise after Jim Hendry told him in August he would not be considered for the Cubs’ managerial position.

Pat Listach appeared to be the front-runner to serve as Quade’s bench coach but Listach may stay with the Nationals. According to Bruce Levine, Listach has been offered a contract to stay on as Jim Riggleman’s third base coach. Listach’s current contract ends on October 31.

Levine has heard two names that could serve as Quade’s bench coach if Listach does not return to the Cubs’ organization … Don Wakamatsu and Gary Varsho.

Don Wakamatsu reportedly interviewed for the Cubs managerial position and has been linked to the Baltimore Orioles bench job in recent days.

Gary Varsho, the former Cub and former bench coach of the Pirates, served as Larry Bowa’s bench coach from 2002 – 2006 in Philadelphia and managed the last three games of the 2004 season after Bowa was dismissed.

Ryne Sandberg
According to Bruce Levine, no one has asked for permission to interview Ryne Sandberg. The Dodgers and Diamondbacks had shown a little interest but did not ask for permission and are no longer interested.

Levine recently asked Oneri Fleita if the organization has given Ryne Sandberg a deadline for letting them know if he will return to manage the I-Cubs in 2011. Fleita told Levine that Sandberg has not been given a time frame.

Carlos Zambrano
Rumors have, and will continue, to suggest this winter that the Cubs are shopping Carlos Zambrano. Jim Hendry has said he has not plans to deal Big Z during the off-season.

Toward the end of the season Carlos Zambrano told Bruce Levine that he would not waive his no trade clause this winter and accept a trade to another team.

Corey Miller
The days of Corey Miller serving as the Cubs’ bullpen catcher are likely over after “he was busted to marijuana possession” while driving through Lincoln, Nebraska.

Corey Miller’s common law wife took responsibility for the 8.4 pounds of marijuana found in a suitcase during a traffic stop. She was arrested and Miller was issued a citation.

Full Report from the Sun-Times
2010 – 2011 Off-Season Calendar

November

  • 2 – 5 – Cubs Organizational Meetings – Mesa, AZ
  • 3 – 26th Annual Cubs Convention Tickets Go on Sale
  • 9 – AL Rawlings Gold Glove Awards announced
  • 10 – NL Rawlings Gold Glove Awards announced
  • 10 – Louisville Sluggers Silver Slugger Awards announced
  • 10 – End of Waiver period
  • 11 – Beginning of New Waiver period – waivers secured on or after November 11, 2010 remain in effect until February 15, 2011, exception: outright waivers
  • 16 – 17 – General Managers Meetings – Orlando, FL
  • 17 – 18 – Owners Meetings – Orlando, FL

5 Days following the Conclusion of the 2010 World Series – Last Day of Exclusive Negotiating Rights for Potential Free Agents
6 Days following the Conclusion of the 2010 World Series – Last Day to Reinstate Players from the 60-Day DL
6 Days following the Conclusion of the 2010 World Series – First Day Major League Free Agents may negotiate and sign with a team other than their former club

  • 19 – Deadline for clubs to file reserve lists for Major League club and all Minor League Levels (Rule 5 Draft protection)
  • 23 – Last date for former club to offer salary arbitration to ranked free agents to be eligible for draft pick compensation
  • 30 – Last date for free agent to accept salary arbitration from his former club

BBWAA Awards – All Award winners announced at 2:00pm E.S.T.

  • 15 – NL and AL Rookie of the Year
  • 16 – NL Cy Young Award
  • 17 – NL and AL Manager of the Year
  • 18 – AL Cy Young Award
  • 22 – NL Most Valuable Player
  • 23 – AL Most Valuable Player

December

  • 2 – Deadline for clubs to offer 2011 contracts to unsigned players (arbitration eligible, service years 3-6)
  • 2 – Last day to request outright waivers to assign player prior to the Rule 5 Draft
  • 6 – 9 Baseball’s Winter Meetings – Lake Buena Vista, FL
  • 9 – Rule 5 Draft

2011

January

  • 5 – 15 – Salary arbitration filing period
  • (6 – BBWAA Hall of Fame voting announced)
  • 14 – 16 – 26th Annual Cubs Convention
  • 18 – Exchange of salary arbitration figures

February

  • 1 – 21 – Salary arbitration hearings
  • 13 – Voluntary reporting date to Spring Training for pitchers, catchers and injured players
  • 15 – End of Waiver Period
  • 16 – Beginning of New Waiver Period
  • 28 – Voluntary reporting date to Spring Training for other players

March

  • 1 – Mandatory reporting date to Spring Training for all players
  • 2 – 11 – Teams may renew contracts of unsigned players
  • 14 – Last day to place a player on unconditional release waivers and pay 30 days termination pay instead of 45 days
  • 28 – Last day to request unconditional release waivers on a player without having to pay his full 2010 salary
  • 30 – All clubs must reduce their active roster to 25 players
  • 31 – Opening Day for 2011 Baseball Season

April

  • 1 – Opening Day for Chicago Cubs – Cubs vs. Pirates at Wrigley Field

Will Update Off-Season Calendar throughout winter

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Well, that’s the latest … enjoy the World Series.

Quote of the Day

"The man says 'play ball' not 'work ball,' you know." - Willie Stargell
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